February 20, 2018

CG Tutorial Master List

Here I’m collecting all the articles, tutorials and guides related to CG art that I’ve found useful or want to save for future reference. It’s also serving as a personal lesson guide. I’m constantly reorganizing and adding to this list as my understanding of the field grows and I find new material. If you know a good resource I should add, please feel free to comment or shoot me an email!

Continue Reading to see the list.

Reading List
I. Intro to Maya
II. Walkthroughs (Part A – Modeling)
III. Shading & Materials
IV. Walkthroughs (Part B – Modeling & Texturing)
V. Sculpting
VI. Lighting & Rendering
VII. Effects
VIII. Walkthroughs (Part C – Environments)
VIIII. Rigging
IX. Animation
X. Other Resources


 [Digital] Modeling by William Vaughan
 Introducing Autodesk Maya 2013 by Dariush Derakhshani
 Mastering Autodesk Maya 2013 by Dariush Derakhshani
NVidia: The CG Tutorial (emphasis on programming)
 What are poly counts? What are good or bad poly counts?
 Low Poly Modeling: How and Why
 Basic Methods of Modeling
 Using the Extrude Tool
 Bridge, Fill Hole, & Append Poly (Julian Norum Youtube) (10m)
 Bump Maps, Normal Maps, and Displacement Maps
 The Most Common Modeling Problems (BlenderForNoobs Youtube) (18m)
Polycount: Understanding Averaged Normals and Ray Projection
Polycount: Making Sense of Hard Edges, UVs, Normal Maps and Vertex Counts
 Realistic Head Modeling Guide (Thundercloud Studio)
 Select Vertex Based on its Valence (number of connected edges)


Polycount Wiki: Topology
— Mesh Topology: Triangles Versus Quads
— Subdivision Surfaces: Artifacts (GuerrillaCG Youtube) (5m)
— Topology in Theory and Practice (Blender Cookie Youtube) (49m)
— Head Topology Overview (Blender Cookie Youtube) (19m)
— Hand Topology Overview (Blender Cookie Youtube) (14m)
— Foot Topology Overview (CG Cookie Vimeo) (10m)
 Shoulder Topology Overview (CG Cookie Vimeo) (11m)
— Male and Female Torso Topology (Blender Cookie Youtube) (19m)
— Alternative Body Topology (CGSociety)
Topology Examples (3DTotal)


 (Lynda.com) Maya Essentials 1: Interface & Organization (1h 35m)
 (Lynda.com) Maya Essentials 2: Polygonal Modeling Techniques (2h 17m)
 (Lynda.com) Maya Essentials 3: NURBS Modeling Techniques (2h 18m)
 (Lynda.com) Maya Essentials 4: Creating Textures and Materials (1h 51m)
 (Lynda.com) Maya Essentials 5: Animation Tools (1h 20m)
 (Lynda.com) Maya Essentials 6: Lights and Rendering (1h 52m)
— (Lynda.com) Unity 3D 3.5 Essential Training (10h 51m)
— Learning Maya: A Beginner’s Practical Introduction (2 parts)
Using Hotkeys to Speed up your Workflow
Creating a Custom Shelf
— Beginner Modeling Tips
— Cleaning up Bad Geometry
Bevel VS Smooth in Maya

II. WALKTHROUGHS (Part A – Modeling)

 (Lynda.com) Modeling a Character in Maya (3h 3m)
— Model & Render a Realistic Toothbrush
Intro: Lava Lamp – Modeling, Dynamics, Lighting, Shading
Modeling Tips: Symmetry & Translation
Modeling Tips: Fitting Tracks to Wheels Using EP Curve and Tangents
Creating Chains in Maya
Model a Coffee Cup (4 Parts)
Modeling a Golf Ball using GeoSphere – MEL Script
Hard Surface Modeling Methods
— Modeling a Low Poly character
Model a Low Poly Hand
— Box Modeling a Male Torso
Facial Modeling Timelapse by Sergi Caballer
— Poly Modeling a Head
— Recreating Pixar’s Wall-E in High Poly (13 parts)
Modeling a Realistic Human Body – The Feet
Modeling a Realistic Human Body – The Hands
Modeling a Realistic Human Body – The Body
Modeling a Realistic Human Body – The Ear
Modeling a Realistic Human Body – The Head


— (Lynda.com) Creating Textures and Shaders in Maya (3h 30m)
— (Lynda.com) Create Shader Networks in Maya and Mental Ray (5h 28m)
(Lynda.com) Creating Fur in Maya (1h 12m)
— (Lynda.com) Texturing for Games in Maya, Mudbox & Photoshop (4h 22m)
Blender 3D: Noob to Pro/ UV Map Basics
— Beginner Texturing Tips
— UV Unwrapping a Character (intro)
— UV a Symmetrical Character in Maya 2009
UV Mapping in Maya: Fundamentals (7 parts)
 The Only Way to Avoid UV Seams
 Smoothing UVs in Maya
UV Editing and Layout Tips in Maya (Digital-Tutors Youtube) (10m)
Intro to Game Texturing
— Unwrapping UVs on a Low Poly Character
— Create a Realistic Dirt Layer Using Transfer Maps
— Creating Hair with Procedural Textures
— Texturing Creature/Human Skin
 Non-Photo Realistic Shading
— Accurate Displacement Workflow (by Akin Bilgic)
Rendering PTex Textures from Mudbox
Maya Fur 01 Fur Setup (Tim Carter Youtube) (5m)
Maya Fur 02 Fur Settings (Tim Carter Youtube) (8m)
Maya Fur 03 Fur Rendering (Tim Carter Youtube) (10m)
Maya Fur 04 Fur Grooming (Tim Carter Youtube) (14m)
Maya Fur 05 Fur Dynamics (Tim Carter Youtube) (11m)
Maya Fur 06 Fur and Muscles (Tim Carter Youtube) (8m)
Troubleshooting General Fur Issues (Autodesk Documentation)
Troubleshoot Rendering Fur in the Maya Software Renderer (Autodesk Documentation)

IV. WALKTHROUGHS (Part B – Modeling & Shading)

— (Lynda.com) Game Prop Creation (9h 33m) – Photoshop, Mudbox, Unity
— (Lynda.com) Game Character Creation (2h 58m) – Photoshop, Unity
— Thor’s Hammer (2 Parts)
— Leather Shoes (2 Parts)
— Creating an Old Weathered Low Poly Post Box (2 parts)
— Create a New York Subway Entrance (3 Parts)
Creating the iPhone (3 Parts)
Glass Jug with NURBS and Dielectric Material
Wire Mesh Modeling
— Realistic Eye Modeling/Texture
Fast Ramp Shaded Eye
Creating a Realistic Earth
— Crafting a Detailed Next-Gen Boiler (7 Parts)
Photo Realistic Tattoo Gun (9 Parts)
— Modeling a Luger P08 using Hard Surface Subdivision Surfaces (2 Parts)
— Creating a Stylized Car (7 Parts)
Modeling a Human by Tony Jung (12 Parts)
— Street Cop Workflow by Mashru Mishu (high poly to low poly)
The Making of the Giant


 MudboxLive.com Masterclass
 MudboxLive.com Masterclass: Organics (11 parts)
 (Lynda.com) Mudbox 2013 Essential Training(4h 14m)
 Creature Modeling & Sculpting in Mudbox (Autodesk Youtube) (59m)
Getting Started with Mudbox (Autodesk Youtube) (12m)
Sculpting Basics in Mudbox (Autodesk Youtube) (15m)
Working with Sculpt Layers (Autodesk Youtube) (11m)
Using Vector Displacement Maps (Autodesk Youtube) (18m)
Materials and Texture Basics (Autodesk Youtube) (11m)
On-Target Presentation in Mudbox (Autodesk Youtube) (10m)
Painting Basics in Mudbox (Autodesk Youtube) (10m)
Working with Multiple Paint Layers (Autodesk Youtube) (13m)
Using the Dry Brush (Autodesk Youtube) (5m)
Using the Image Adjustment Brushes (Autodesk Youtube) (11m)
Working with Mudbox and Adobe Photoshop (Autodesk Youtube) (13m)
Map Extraction in Mudbox (Autodesk Youtube) (14m)
Using the Pose Tools (Autodesk Youtube) (10m)
Working with Mudbox and Autodesk Maya (Autodesk Youtube) (5m)
Mudbox 2011 Texture Painting (Autodesk Youtube) (17m)
— PTex Painting in Mudbox (Autodesk Youtube) (58m)
ZClassroom – Zbrush Introduction (14 parts)
ZClassroom – Zbrush UI (4 parts)
ZClassroom – ZSpheres (13 parts)
ZClassroom – Topology – ZRemesher (2 parts)
ZClassroom – Environments with Seth Thompson (5 parts)
ZClassroom – Hard Surface Panel Loops (10 parts)
ZClassroom – Environments with Tate Mosesian (6 parts)
ZClassroom – Transpose Tool (3 parts)
ZClassroom – Insert Mesh (9 parts)
ZClassroom – Micromesh (2 parts)
ZClassroom – 3D Brushes (9 parts)
ZClassroom – Dynamesh (3 parts)
ZClassroom – Fibermesh (10 parts)
ZClassroom – NoiseMaker (3 parts)
ZClassroom – Sculpting with Michael Pavlovich (5 parts)
ZClassroom – Shadowbox (6 parts)
ZClassroom – Projection Master (7 parts)
Tips & Tricks: Dynamesh & ZRemesher
Creating Multiple Sculpts from a Single Basemesh in ZBrush (Part 1)
Creating Multiple Sculpts from a Single Basemesh in ZBrush (Part 2)
 How to Render your Mudbox File in Mental Ray
 Troubleshooting Maya-Mudbox Workflow (2 parts)
Mudbox Workflow Troubleshooting: Approximation Errors and Displacement Scale (2 parts)
Presenting Mudbox Models in Maya with Color, Displacement, AO & Normal Maps (3 parts)
Using Autodesk Maya (and Mudbox) in your Pipeline (Autodesk Youtube) (25m)
 Rendering Displacement in Maya with Mental Ray (16m)


— (Lynda.com) Lighting and Rendering with Mental Ray (4h 56m)
— (Lynda.com) Learning V-Ray for Maya: A Professional Reference Guide (4h 52m)
— (Lynda.com) Getting Started with Matchmover, Toxik, and Backburner in Maya 2010 (2h 12m)
— How to Enhance Render Quality
V-ray Render Optimization (by Akin Bilgic)
Ambient Occlusion Render Layers
— Render Wireframes with Ambient Occlusion
Render Wireframe on Shaded
— Intro to Character Lighting Concepts
Three-Point Lighting
— Studio Lighting in Maya
Lighting Dome Using Final Gather
— Build a Reusable Light Rig
— Comparing Indirect Lighting Systems
— Global Illumination VS Photometric Lighting
— Using IES Lights
— VRay Caustics and Illuminative AA
Intro to HDRI Using VRay
— Image-Based Lighting and Creating HDRI
— Add Realism and Depth Using Render Layers
Character Turntables Using Sun and Sky
— Using Sun and Sky with Mental Ray
— Correctly Setting Up Linear Color Workflow
Mental Ray Approximation Editor
Maya Batch Rendering
Easy Depth of Field
Professionally Presenting Models: Achieve Great Shaded Renders


— (Lynda.com) Maya Particle Effects (2h 8m)
— (Lynda.com) Creating Particle and Fire Effects (3h 46m)
— (Lynda.com) Creating Simulation in Maya Dynamics (2h 11m)
— (Lynda.com) Creating Fluid Effects in Maya (2h 16m)
— (Lynda.com) Liquid Simulation in Maya (2h 31m)
— (Lynda.com) Understanding Maya nCloth (3h 26m)
— Creating Fireworks with Particles & AfterEffects
— Fluids & Smoke – Part 1 Scene Setup
— Fluids & Smoke – Part 2 Animation
— Create a Fire Effect Using Maya Fluids
— Realistic Candle Flame Shading
— Lava Shader Effects in Maya
— Create a Realistic Explosion Using Maya Fluids
— Create Awesome Cloth Simulation Using nDynamics
— Create Condensation on Glass Using Paint Effects
— Designing and Animating a Tree Using Paint Effects
— Animating Grass and Flowers Using Paint Effects
— Occlusion Shading Opacity-Mapped Geometry (and Paint Effects)
Maya Dynamics Solid Shatter Effect
Particle Kill Fields
Goal-Oriented nParticles for Morphing
Object Placement Using Dynamic Simulation (7m)

VIII. WALKTHROUGHS (Part C – Environments)

— (Lynda.com) Creating Natural Environments in Maya (4h 18m)
— (Lynda.com) Creating Game Environments in Maya & Photoshop (5h 10m)
Interior Design – Modeling a Room
Posh Living Room Scene (2 Parts)
Bathroom Interior Design (2 Parts)
Exterior Environment Creation (5 Parts)


 (Lynda.com) Character Rigging in Maya (4h 37m)
 (Lynda.com) Working with HumanIK Rigs in Maya (58m)
— (Lynda.com) Vehicle Rigging in Maya (3h 38m)
The Basics of Maya Blend Shapes (Wobbe Koning Youtube) (4m)
How to Animate a Character with Blend Shapes (Creative Bloq – Pat Imrie)
Modeling with Blend Shapes (Chris Cook Youtube) (16m)
How to Correct Bad Deformations in Maya (unpicked1 Youtube) (8m)
Corrective Blend Shapes in Maya (Andrew Silke Youtube) (7 parts)
Maya Blend Shapes Tips & Tricks (Steven Roselle Youtube) (8m)
— (Facial) Animation Using Deformers
— Mirroring Blend Shapes
Rigging a Cartoon Bottle
Rigging with Setup Machine/Face Machine/Blend Shapes (2 Parts)
Advanced Production Quality Cartoon Flower Rig (3 Parts)
Advanced Multi-Character Futurama Bender Rig (3 Parts)
— Rigging Muscles – Fahrenheit Digital
Topology Considerations for Real Time Elbow Deformations (Vinny Argentina Youtube) (7m 51s)
Blendshape Paint Deform Tool
A Hybrid Approach to Facial Rigging (Disney)
Maya Character Creation: Modeling and Animation Controls: Ch 4. Deforming the Skin


— (Lynda.com) Character Animation Fundamentals with Maya (6h 6m)
Animating Wheels Automatically Using Expressions
Animate a Clock Using Expressions


Creativebloq Maya Tutorials
Polycount Wiki
The Art of Moving Points (Hippydrome)
Brendan Body’s Bird Flight Tutorial
3DM3 Maya Tutorials
Pixel And Poly Reference & Training
11 Second Club Blog
Antony Ward CG Tutorials
Arild Wiro Anfinnsen Tutorials
Siggraph 2013
Walt Disney Animation Publications
Veterinary Anatomical Illustrations
Rey Bustos Fantasy Anatomy Maquettes
Game Artisans – Tutorials
CG Channel.com

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